Many intersections come into play within environmental work. At Iowa IPL, faith and climate justice is just one of these intersections. This month, we asked each of our Called To Climate Action student leaders how they hope to bring the intersection of faith and climate justice into their futures.
Guided by Islamic teachings, I am committed to integrating sustainability into daily life, showcasing the link between faith, environmental responsibility, and justice. I aim to inspire fellow Muslims through conversations about our shared duty to protect the Earth and advocate for those disproportionately affected by climate change. Empowered by practical experience, I’m determined to lead by example. Through conscious choices like energy conservation and responsible consumption, I will bridge the gap between my beliefs and actions. Locally, I want to initiate projects that resonate with faith-driven climate justice, such as environmental cleanups, climate education, and nature focused prayer. Armed with insights and an unwavering commitment, I am ready to forge a future where faith, environmental justice, and climate action seamlessly intersect.
In the future, I want to continue pursuing the relationship of faith and climate justice. I believe that nurturing this intersection will give me more motivation. One of my favorite things about my religion is the community I gain. Trying to battle the entire climate crisis alone can be overwhelming, but connecting with others from my church who want to reduce their carbon footprint gives me hope. Turning to scripture also gives me hope to continue. I know that God wants His children to try their best to be stewards of the Earth. We can’t all be perfect in this colossal task, but having peer support and motivation from my faith can make a big difference.
One of my biggest takeaways is that “fighting” about climate change does no good. Instead, when we talk to people about climate change, we need to focus on values. Religion is something that many people value highly. By tapping into what people care about – whether that be knitting, reading, farming, or homelessness – we can make a real difference. By discussing values like love, compassion, respect, a duty to nourish the gifts God has given us, and a call to help the oppressed, we can foster deeper connections with one another. Our goal is not to change people’s belief systems, but to help them realize that climate action aligns with the beliefs they already possess.
Our Called To Climate Action Student Leadership Program engages college students who feel called to act on the climate crisis while being rooted in faith. This program prepares young student leaders to take climate action with them wherever their individual paths may lead them in the future. This program is essential in helping shape the next generation of climate leaders in our state.